Mark 3:21-25

Mark 3:21 (KJB)
And when his friends heard of it, they went out to lay hold on him: for they said, He is beside himself.

Then the word had spread not only to His friends but probably more to his family concerning the turmoil which His ministry was producing. They had probably thought that if He does not curtail the crowds, then the Romans would come and arrest Him for causing a riot wherever He went. They may have also though that He was not taking care of Himself in the physical realm such as lack of sleep or food and that is why they stated “He is beside Himself.” That phrase could also be taken to mean “insane, confused, astounded.” They had heard of these “riots” and maybe they thought Jesus was causing them for the wrong reason. To lay hold on Him meant they wanted to minister to Him the same way He was ministering almost non-stop to the crowds. There is no intent of a violent action against Jesus here but more of a “for His own good” mentality.

Mark 3:22 (KJB)
And the scribes which came down from Jerusalem said, He hath Beelzebub, and by the prince of the devils casteth he out devils.

Once again the Scribes heard it and their jealousy was aroused and now they accused Jesus of casting out the devil, not by the power of God, but by Beelzebub, which is another name for Satan. The name Beelzebub means “lord or master of the flies” and is attributed to the chief deity of Ekron. (2 Ki 1:2 KJV) And Ahaziah fell down through a lattice in his upper chamber that was in Samaria, and was sick: and he sent messengers, and said unto them, Go, inquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron whether I shall recover of this disease. These Scribes were in essence saying that Jesus was in league with the devil to deceive the people and gain a following. They believed Jesus was under the authority of Satan.

Mark 3:23 (KJB)
And he called them unto him, and said unto them in parables, How can Satan cast out Satan?

Once again Jesus uses His favorite method of teaching unbelievers and that is with parables. It is not written as to whether the Scribes had reasoned within themselves as they did previously or if they were verbal. The bottom line is that Jesus now addresses their opposition with a simple question. How does Satan cast out Satan? It is a question of logic. Whenever Jesus cast out a devil from a person, the devil had to depart the person because Jesus, being the more powerful one, had the authority and power to command the devil to leave. How then can Satan cast out Satan, that is, how can Satan cast himself out by himself since someone stronger is needed to do the expulsion? Equal power would result in a stalemate.

Mark 3:24 (KJB)
And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.

Jesus knew what lies the Pharisees were telling about Him, so He gives them a lesson in maintaining the power of a kingdom. If a kingdom was all in agreement and the people were obedient and served the goals and aims of the kingdom, then it would become much stronger. History has proven that empires have crumbled not because of being attacked from the outside but from the inside. Whenever there is dissension and it turns into factions and those factions turn into street actions, it will cause trouble for the government, then that will weaken the nation and eventually it becomes so weak that it will be unable to defend itself and then it would be ripe for takeover. We see this happening in so many countries in the world today, including the United States.

Mark 3:25 (KJB)
And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.

Jesus then brought it down from a kingdom and applied the principle to a family in a house. If there is continuous fighting in a family and then factions form, eventually that home will be destroyed. This is something that we see everyday in our society. Divorce would be a good example. Disagreements start out small but if they are allowed to smolder, then they will only get bigger to the point of everyone taking sides and eventually the family will split and that house will fall.

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